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U.S. Attorney Peter Smith to retire Oct. 1

US attorney Peter Smith.JPG

U.S. Attorney Peter J. Smith, right, addresses reporters at a news conference to announce more formalized partnerships with local agencies to fight gun crimes, gangs and heroin, in particular.

After more than six years of leading federal prosecutors in the midstate, U.S. Attorney Peter J. Smith will retire, effective Oct. 1, his office announced Monday.

The 75-year-old Camp Hill resident and Wilkes-Barre native has held the post in the U.S. Middle District of Pennsylvania since his appointment by President Barack Obama in June 2010. His office handles federal criminal and civil prosecutions in 33 counties.

Major cases for his office during Smith’s tenure ranged from the Kids for Cash investigation in Lackawanna County to prosecution of the Southside street gang in York. Corruption cases involving horse doping at Penn National Race Course, major frauds committed by MoneyGarm agents, and the prosecution of the developer in the failed Capitol View Commerce Center project in Harrisburg also were on his office’s docket.

As Smith prepares to leave, the office is still pursuing corruption investigations involving the state Treasury Department that resulted in charges against former Treasurers Rob McCord and Barbara Hafer.

Smith’s departure will mark the end of a career that began with a law degree from Georgetown University Law School. He is a former assistant U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, was Pennsylvania’s first inspector general from 1987-91 and also also served in the state auditor general’s office and treasury.

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